[Federal Register Volume 70, Number 236 (Friday, December 9, 2005)]
[Notices]
[Pages 73236-73237]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E5-7125]


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ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

[Docket No. EPA-HQ-ORD-2005-0029; FRL-8006-6]


Air Quality Criteria for Oxides of Nitrogen

AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION: Notice; call for information.

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SUMMARY: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is undertaking 
to update and revise, where appropriate, the Air Quality Criteria for 
Oxides of Nitrogen, EPA/600/8-91/049aF-cF, published in August 1993 by 
the Office of Research and Development, National Center for 
Environmental Assessment. Interested parties are invited to assist the 
EPA in developing and refining the scientific information base for 
updating the Air Quality Criteria for Oxides of Nitrogen by submitting 
research studies that have been published, accepted for publication, or 
presented at a public scientific meeting. Areas where additional new 
information will be particularly useful to EPA for this project are 
described in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this notice.

DATES: All communications and information should be submitted by 
January 31, 2006.

ADDRESSES: Information may be submitted electronically, by mail, by 
facsimile, or by hand delivery/courier. Please follow the detailed 
instructions provided in the section of this notice entitled 
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For details on the period for 
submission of research information from the public, contact the Office 
of Environmental Information Docket; telephone: 202-566-1752; 
facsimile: 202-566-1753; or e-mail: ORD.Docket@epa.gov.
    For technical information, contact Dennis Kotchmar, MD, facsimile: 
919-541-1818 or e-mail: kotchmar.dennis@epa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Information About the Project

    Section 108(a) of the Clean Air Act directs the Administrator to 
identify certain pollutants which ``may reasonably be anticipated to 
endanger public health and welfare'' and to issue air quality criteria 
for them. These air quality criteria are to ``accurately reflect the 
latest scientific knowledge useful in indicating the kind and extent of 
all identifiable effects on public health or welfare which may be 
expected from the presence of [a] pollutant in the ambient air * * *.'' 
Under section 109 of the Act, EPA is then to establish National Ambient 
Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for each pollutant for which EPA has 
issued criteria. Section 109(d) of the Act subsequently requires 
periodic review and, if appropriate, revision of existing air quality 
criteria to reflect advances in scientific knowledge on the effects of 
the pollutant on public health and welfare. EPA is also to revise the 
NAAQS, if appropriate, based on the revised criteria.
    Oxides of nitrogen (NOX) are one of six principal (or 
``criteria'') pollutants for which EPA has established National Ambient 
Air Quality Standards (NAAQS). Periodically, EPA reviews the scientific 
basis for these standards by preparing an Air Quality Criteria Document 
(AQCD). The AQCD provides scientific bases for additional technical and 
policy assessments that form the basis for EPA decisions on the 
adequacy of a current NAAQS and the appropriateness of new or revised 
standards. One of the first steps in this process is to announce the 
beginning of this periodic NAAQS review and the start of the 
development of the AQCD, by requesting the public to submit scientific 
literature that they want to bring to the attention of the Agency. The 
Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee (CASAC), a review committee of 
the EPA's Science Advisory Board (SAB), is mandated by the Clean Air 
Act with performing an independent expert scientific review of EPA's 
draft AQCDs. As the process proceeds, the public will have 
opportunities to review and comment on the draft oxides of nitrogen 
AQCD. These opportunities will also be announced in the Federal 
Register.
    Since completion of the 1993 Air Quality Criteria for Oxides of 
Nitrogen, EPA has continued to follow the scientific research on oxides 
of nitrogen exposure and its effects on health and the environment and 
has gathered appropriate studies. The Agency is particularly interested 
in additional new information concerning: (a) Toxicological studies of 
effects of controlled exposure to nitrogen dioxide or other oxides of 
nitrogen on laboratory animals and humans; (b) epidemiologic 
(observational) studies of health effects associated with ambient 
exposures of

[[Page 73237]]

human populations to nitrogen dioxide or other oxides of nitrogen; and 
(c) ecological studies of the effects on agricultural crops and natural 
terrestrial and/or aquatic ecosystems of ambient exposures to nitrogen 
dioxide or other oxides of nitrogen. These and other selected 
literature relevant to a review of the NAAQS for oxides of nitrogen 
will be assessed in the forthcoming revised Oxides of Nitrogen AQCD. 
One or more drafts of the Oxides of Nitrogen AQCD are expected to be 
made available by EPA for public comment and CASAC review during 2006 
and 2007. In addition, other opportunities for submission of new peer-
reviewed, published (or in-press) papers will be possible as part of 
public comment on the draft documents that will be reviewed by CASAC.

II. How To Submit Information to the Docket

    EPA has established an official public docket for information 
pertaining to the revision of the oxides of nitrogen criteria document. 
Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-ORD-2005-0029, 
by one of the following methods:
     http://www.regulations.gov: Follow the on-line 
instructions for submitting comments.
     E-mail: ORD.Docket@epa.gov.
     Fax: 202-566-1753; Office of Environmental Information 
(OEI) Docket in the Headquarters EPA Docket Center.
     Mail: Office of Environmental Information (OEI) Docket in 
the Headquarters EPA Docket Center (Mail Code 2822T), U.S. 
Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW., 
Washington, DC 20460. If you provide information in writing, please 
submit one unbound original, with pages numbered consecutively, and 
three copies. For attachments, provide an index, number pages 
consecutively with the main text, and submit an unbound original and 
three copies.
     Hand Delivery: Office of Environmental Information (OEI) 
Docket in the Headquarters EPA Docket Center, EPA West Building, Room 
B102, 1301 Constitution Ave., NW., Washington, DC. The EPA Docket 
Center Public Reading Room is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday 
through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The telephone number for the 
public Reading Room is 202-566-1744, and the telephone number for the 
OEI Docket is 202-566-1752. Such deliveries are only accepted during 
the Docket's normal hours of operation, and special arrangements should 
be made for deliveries of boxed information.
    Instructions: Direct your comments to Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-ORD-
2005-0029. Please adhere to the specified submitting period. 
Information received or submitted past the closing date will be marked 
``late'' and may only be considered if time permits. EPA's policy is 
that all comments received will be included in the public docket 
without change and may be made available online at http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided, 
unless the comment includes information claimed to be Confidential 
Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is 
restricted by statute. Do not submit information that you consider to 
be CBI or otherwise protected through http://www.regulations.gov or e-
mail.
    The http://www.regulations.gov Web site is an ``anonymous access'' 
system, which means EPA will not know your identity or contact 
information unless you provide it in the body of your comment. If you 
send an e-mail comment directly to EPA without going through http://www.regulations.gov, your e-mail address will be automatically captured 
and included as part of the comment that is placed in the public docket 
and made available on the Internet. If you submit an electronic 
comment, EPA recommends that you include your name and other contact 
information in the body of your comment and with any disk or CD-ROM you 
submit. If EPA cannot read your comment due to technical difficulties 
and cannot contact you for clarification, EPA may not be able to 
consider or may delay considering your comment. Electronic files should 
avoid the use of special characters, any form of encryption, and be 
free of any defects or viruses. For additional information about EPA's 
public docket visit the EPA Docket Center home page at http://www.epa.gov/epahome/dockets.htm.
    Docket: All documents in the docket are listed in the http://www.regulations.gov index. Although listed in the index, some 
information is not publicly available, e.g., CBI or other information 
whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Certain other material, such 
as copyrighted material, will be publicly available only in hard copy. 
Publicly available docket materials are available either electronically 
in www.regulations.gov or in hard copy at the OEI Docket, EPA/DC, EPA 
West, Room B102, 1301 Constitution Ave., NW., Washington, DC. The 
Public Reading Room is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through 
Friday, excluding legal holidays. The telephone number for the Public 
Reading Room is 202-566-1744, and the telephone number for the OEI 
Docket is 202-566-1752; facsimile: 202-566-1753; or e-mail: 
ORD.Docket@epa.gov.

    Dated: December 1, 2005.
George Alapas,
Acting Director, National Center for Environmental Assessment.
[FR Doc. E5-7125 Filed 12-8-05; 8:45 am]
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